Updated: Nov 14, 2021
9 years ago, sales agent turned social media guru, Nic Fren posted his first eastern suburbs listing to Facebook & hasn't looked back.
I was new to Maroubra, the now CEO of Bespoke Media Group says.
I’d come from selling property in Newcastle and had struggled to get traction in Sydney’s east & this was a tough listing at the time. There were only so many letter box drops I could do or calls I could make.
One day I decided to put it on Facebook.
I'd never seen an agent promote property on social media, so I figured why not?
The post, a screenshot of the domain listing provided the address and property features, with the Facebook caption simply calling out “Need a buyer peeps”.
"I didn’t expect anything to happen in all honesty"
It was something I thought was worth a shot so I took it, and then all of a sudden the phone started to ring.
However, there was a huge result to come.
In the september of 2015, Mr Fren listed & sold 19a Westcott Place, Oakhurst (Sydney’s Western Suburbs) all through Facebook, and claimed the title of the first agent in Australia to list and sell a property on social media.
While waiting for the photographer to come, trying to schedule a time to attend the vacant property which was over an hour away from his office in Woollahra, Mr Fren posted a simple RP Data photo.
"All of a sudden a buyer was found within a day or so from seeing it on my Facebook feed. My career really took off after that sale, he explains. I had news programs reach out, found myself in the papers and online articles and really started something in the industry I'm truly quite of", he explains.
Was it luck or was he onto something?
6 weeks later another owner in Sydney’s west (Oxley Park) engaged the eastern suburbs agents to represent the sale of their property which they had intended on selling early the following year.
The conversation started on Facebook Mr Fren explains.
I wasn’t actually pitching for the business. I was asked if they should paint and re carpet before going on the market.
Without having the opportunity to get out and see the home given the distance, Mr Fren asked the vendor to send through some photos.
"Once I got the photos through I asked the owner if I could put them on Facebook", he says.
"I was still feeling pretty chuffed with myself after the recent social media sale and thought it could be pretty cool. You can imagine my surprise when the property sold within hours of being posted and above my price expectations", he says.
Mr Fren has now gone onto market hundreds of properties on social media throughout the past 9 years and credits his success to “just being me”.
I built a kind of cult following. You have to remember these sales started in a time where social media was a place to be social. It wasn’t the advertising platform it is today. Business pages weren’t around then, not even Instagram if you can remember such a time. I started off talking to my “friends” on Facebook, not at them he says. I was fortunate enough to market my brand in a time where you didn’t have to beat Facebook algorithms and I’d never even heard of boosting posts when I first started.
I started showcasing my daily life and people were engaging with it. I felt I was the odd one out in the industry and I think that was part of the success. I just was who I was and people seemed to like that.
When asked how he feels about real estate marketing on social media today, Mr Fren has a few tips for agents. Everyone’s trying to be #1 in their area and I feel we’ve lost sight that it’s a place to be social. I see a lot of agents doing some really great stuff online and the bar has raised due to the fact everyone is now online these days, but we need to remember that it's not a popularity contest. Your clients are your audience, so put content out to engage, inform and entertain them.
While acknowledging social media is a powerful platform to have, the CEO spells out a few key points that he finds to be successful.
Be authentic. Don’t post online just for the sake of posting. Know who your audience are and talk TO them.
Ease off on the bragging. By all means showcase your success. However, do it in a way that shows humility & thank your audience. You want to engage them, not turn them off.
There’s more to real estate than just sales, records and testimonials.
Tell the story. Often as agents we are good at selling our results, not what we do very well.
I was really big on video when I started filming short previews of my listings and market wraps, back in 2014 and that was on the iPhone 3. The camera quality wasn’t great and I look back at Facebook memories and cringe with embarrassment at times, but the underlying fact was, I was doing something different & doing it my way since 2012 and it’s paid off.
Finally, Mr Fren says "just be yourself." Relax and have fun with it. Not everything needs to be polished. Just be real and authentic and you will be fine.